You are excited about your next outdoor adventure, but are wondering “What size dry bag should I buy?” Our guide will help you find the right dry bag for any camping, hiking, or water fun trip.
The sizes of dry bags vary from 1 and 2-liters all the way up to 65-liters. What size dry bag should you buy depends on what you plan on packing. The most common size for a smaller bag is 5L that is great for electronics, while the 30 to 40L are preferred as the bigger size that is great for 2 people.
When you are heading outdoors for fun and adventure, you need to have a bag that keeps your clothing and personal items dry. You can never be sure of the weather and if there is any boating, canoeing, or kayaking, waterproof bags are essential.
There are thousands of dry bag options available. Different sizes, colors, features, and brands. How do you know which dry bag you should get? Our guide will recommend the top dry bags on the market to start your search.
We also help you find the right size dry bag for your travel plans. Don’t let soggy clothing or gear dampen your outdoor fun. Follow our guide to get the best dry bag so you can have the best adventure.
Table of Contents
What Size Dry Bag Do I Need
A dry bag is designed to keep clothing and personal items dry. You can use them for any of your gear as well as food too. These bags are waterproof and need to be abrasion-resistant and durable.
They are an essential item for anyone who goes exploring outdoors. There are several features to consider when buying a dry bag, so that you get the right one for your needs.
The two most common materials for dry bags are nylon and vinyl. Vinyl is typically used for the smaller bags while nylon is used for all sizes. Nylon dry bags are also made with a waterproof coating and this is denoted by a “D” in the item name. A higher number before the “D” indicates a tougher bag.
These bags also feature two closure types: roll top and zipper seal. Roll top bags are more common because they are more effective at keeping air out. The roll created also acts as a handle for easy carrying.
The zipper closure is similar to that of a freezer bag. You do need to have lubricant for the zipper seal to work effectively. In addition to this, most dry bags come with fully taped seams to keep them maximum water protection.
The sizes of dry bags vary from 1 and 2-liters all the way up to 65-liters. The size you choose depends on what you plan on packing. The most common size for a smaller bag is 5L while the 30 to 40L are preferred as the bigger size.
- 5L Dry Bags are great for electronics, first-aid kits, toiletries, medications, and small meals.
- 10L Dry Bags are ideal for clothing and some electronics or personal items.
- 20L Dry Bags will hold a sleeping bag and some clothing or freeze-dried food.
- 30L Dry Bags can hold a weekend trip for two people or everything one person needs for a week.
- 40L Dry Bags are ideal for longer vacations, multiple people, or carrying everything from your small electronics and toiletries to your sleeping bag.
Some special features to consider include carrying straps and D-rings. Not all dry bags come with these, but they are convenient to have and worth getting. Most dry bags will have straps for you to carry as a duffel bag or as a backpack.
D-rings are also typically included, but if not, you want to buy some. These make it easy to attach multiple bags together, so they are easier to move around.
How Big Is A 5L Dry Bag
- Weight: 1 ounce
- Dimensions: 19” x 6″
A 5L dry bag will hold 1.3 gallons and is ideal for small electronics, personal items, toiletries, a first-aid kit, and some snacks. This works perfectly for a small outing for a few hours. You can also keep personal items in the 5L bag and attach it to a larger bag with other items.
Adventure Lion Premium Waterproof Dry Bag (link to Amazon) is one of the toughest dry bags on the market and it will last you a lifetime. The tough 500D polymer prevents rips or holes so you can take it anywhere.
This bag comes with different strap options so you can pick what works best for you. No need to panic if you drop this bag in the water. Your items will stay dry and the bag will float.
How Much Can You Fit In A 10L Dry Bag
- Weight: 3 ounces
- Dimensions: 21.75” x 11.75”
The dry bag from Earth Pak is one of the most reliable and highest quality bags on the market. Earth Pak -Waterproof Dry Bag (link to Amazon) is highly rated by consumers and comes from a reputable brand.
The 10L bag is perfect for packing clothing and a few personal items or toiletries. You can take everything you need for a short getaway. This bag can handle the most rugged terrain and is completely waterproof.
The clear plastic at the front and back allows you to protect your phone and take pictures. Choose your favorite color and other customizable options. Carry it anywhere with the sturdy backpack straps.
The extra sternum strap is there for additional support, for when your load is heavy. For any water sport adventures in any season, this is the dry bag to get.
What Can You Fit In A 20L Dry Bag
- Weight: 6 ounces
- Dimensions: 24” x 11” x 7”
When you need to pack for two people or a longer trip, a 20L bag will be a better choice. You can even pack a sleeping bag into a 20L dry bag as well as clothing and some food.
The Leader Accessories Heavy Duty Vinyl Waterproof Dry Bag (link to Amazon) is durable and one of the best of this size to take with you. The vinyl polyester material is sealed with high frequency-welded seams, so no water is getting through.
Even when this bag is fully submerged in water, your belongings are safe.
There are seven different color options and an adjustable strap for easy carriage. Leader Accessories is a top name in waterproof adventure items and if you are not satisfied after 30-days, they give your money back.
How Big Is A 30 Liter Dry Bag
- Weight: 16 ounces
- Dimensions: 11″ x 19″
A 30-liter bag is what you want when packing for two people. You can pack all you need for a weekend water trip for you and a friend. Store all your necessities including clothing, toiletries, snacks, electronics, and even a sleeping bag.
The ZBRO Waterproof Dry Bag Backpack (link to Amazon) is a great option for a 30-liter bag and comes in several colors to match with your style. The reflective strip along the back keeps you safe when traveling at night and you can easily find your bag if it falls in the water.
This bag is easy and comfortable to carry thanks to the padded shoulder straps. There is even a mesh pocket for you to store wet items that you do not want mixing with your dry clothing. Or you can store tools like a flashlight and water bottle in the pocket too.
How Big Is A 40L Dry Bag
- Weight: 1.16 pounds
- Dimensions: 3” x 1.5” x 20”
You will want a 40-liter dry bag for longer travels and when you have gear to bring with you. A larger bag will carry more which means it will be heavier. You want a durable bag that can hold everything as well as one that is comfortable to carry around.
The ARCHWAY Floating Waterproof Dry Bag (link to Amazon) is one of the best larger dry bags, made from 500D tarpaulin PVC. It will not rip, it will not tear, and it will not let your items get wet.
This bag floats in water so you never have to worry about dropping it from a kayak or canoe. The watertight seams ensure all your items are dry even if the bag goes in the water.
The waterproof phone case keeps your phone handy and safe. The carrying strap is adjustable so you can carry the bag across your body or on the shoulder.
Best Dry Bag For Travel
Whether your travels involve boating, kayaking, swimming, fishing, hiking, or camping, the Unigear Waterproof Dry Bag (link to Amazon) is an ideal dry bag.
This bag is lightweight and yet made from the most durable 900D polyester with PVC lining. It will not tear and is resistant to abrasions, so your personal items are protected at all times.
The bag is compact yet holds all that you need and has a waterproof phone case too. This keeps your phone handy for those action photos while keeping it safe and dry.
The roll top keeps your items secure and the burst protection will never let you down. Depending on what you are taking with you, choose from the smaller 2-liter option or load up the 40-liter bag.
You can choose the strap style and larger bags come with additional strap support. Last but not least, you get a 2.5-liter bladder to keep you refreshed and hydrated. Whatever size you get, this dry bag from Unigear is a top travel necessity.
What Size Dry Bag is Best For Clothes Backpacking
When backpacking is your destination, a dry bag is a good choice. You may not plan on rain, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Plus, you never know what you may come across; beautiful rivers, inviting lakes, and waterfalls are the best part of any backpacking adventure.
With a KastKing Dry Bag (link to Amazon), your backpacking will be easy. All your belongings will be safe and dry, and the bag is lightweight and easy to carry.
The 10-liter dry bag is the best option for a day of backpacking as it will easily hold your phone, snacks, towels, and change of clothes.
The straps are removable and adjustable so you can carry the bag across your body or as a backpack. KastKing is an affordable and reliable option for all your backpacking adventures.
What Size Dry Bag For a DSLR Camera
You will want to go with the Sea to Summit Lightweight Dry Sack (link to Amazon) for dry bags to carry electronics or a camera. The 70D waterproof fabric keeps your things dry and is lightweight.
The smaller dry bags that are 1, 2, or even 4-liter are best for small electronics like cameras as well as snacks.
If you are out for a day trip, this bag is a good option. Or you can keep your small, valuable items or food in this bag and attach it with D-rings to a larger dry bag that has clothes and a sleeping bag.
The PU coating inside the bag prevents rips and is white so you can see your items clearly. The roll top closure will make sure your camera does not fall out and water does not get in to damage your valuable belongings.
What Size Dry Bag For Kayaking
The IDRYBAG Waterproof Dry Bag (link to Amazon) is the best option for kayaking adventures. You want to go with the 15- or 20-liter options to make sure you can bring all that you need. The 500D waterproof material keeps water out and is resistant to tears and abrasions.
You can fit all that you need in the 20-liter bag including, maps, camera, clothing, sleeping bag, food, tent, first-aid kits, and any miscellaneous gear you need for kayaking.
The reflective trim will keep you safe and helps you locate your bag should it fall in the water at night. The design is also ergonomic making the bag comfortable to carry as a backpack.
Keep important items and tools handy in the front pocket and valuables in the secure inner pouch. Wherever you take your kayak too, you will have all you need with this dry bag and it will be dry and secure when you get there.
How Big Of A Dry Bag Do I Deed For A Sleeping Bag
To pack a sleeping bag with you, you will need at least a 20-liter dry bag. Depending on what else you are bringing, you may need a larger one.
The 45-liter ALPS Mountaineering 7264002 Dry Sack (link to Amazon) is perfect for clothing, toiletries, electronics, food, and a sleeping bag. And this is for two people!
The fabric is watertight and permeable, so air can be pressed out without letting water in. The nylon Ripstop fabric will never tear and the taped seams keep this nag together through every adventure.
ALPS is a trusted name in outdoor products and gives you this quality dry bag for an affordable price.
Take it on any of your travels so you have everything you need in one convenient place. Sleeping bag too.
Helpful Tips On What Size Dry Bag Should I Buy
There are many dry bags for travel and outdoor explorations. Size will depend on what you are packing and how many people you are packing for. Other than what size dry bag should you buy, there are a few other features to consider before buying.
- Craftsmanship: You want a trusted name and brand to get the most reliable craftsmanship. Without this you may end up with a dry bag that doesn’t keep things dry.
- Features: Look for additional features such as pockets to store tools and smaller items like a phone. Splash proof pockets are the best for electronic devices. Mesh pockets are good for holding wet clothes you do not want in the bag. Reflective strips are a great feature to keep you safe and help you find your bag.
- Transportation: The straps for each bag will depend on the overall size. All straps are designed to be carried over your shoulder. Smaller dry bags typically have one strap and may or may not have padding. Larger bags will have padding for comfort as you are carrying heavier weight. The straps for larger bags also resemble a backpack.
There are a number of products you can buy where quality does not have to be the highest for the item to be effective. This is not the case with dry bags. You do not want to overlook quality because you do not want a situation where your items end up ruined by water.
With dry bags, the good news is you do not need to spend a fortune for quality. There are many affordable options that will last a lifetime and will keep your belongings safe. Dry bags are great for every activity from, hiking, to camping, to kayaking.
Through sun, rain, and snow, the dry bags we recommend here will be there for you every step of the way. You just need to know which size dry bag you should buy, pick your color, and get out there and have fun!